West Palm Beach
Federal Defense Attorney
Let federal criminal lawyer David. J. Joffe
help you fight the tough charges you face
Federal prosecutors place enormous pressure upon criminal defendants. Various federal-level law enforcement agencies invest considerable resources in gathering evidence before filing criminal charges against someone in West Palm Beach, Florida. Sentencing guidelines frequently authorize lengthy prison sentences and high fines. Without the representation of a tenacious West Palm Beach federal defense attorney, you could easily be overwhelmed by a system willing to sweep aside your rights and pressure you into admitting guilt.
Primary types of federal crimes
Federal agencies, like as the FBI, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, and Drug Enforcement Administration, look for violations of federal laws related to:
- Drug crimes: Federal prosecution, sometimes in conjunction with state prosecution, becomes possible for people allegedly involved in the trafficking, transport, or manufacturer of illicit drugs, like heroin, fentanyl, or methamphetamine. Prescription medications can also be subject to drug laws when they are trafficked outside official channels. The severity of penalties increases in relation to the amount of drugs involved, type of substance, and the scope of the operation.
- White collar crimes: This is a large category of federal crimes related to financial issues, racketeering, and interference with public officials. Examples of white collar crimes include embezzlement, money laundering, bribery, or tax evasion. Although these are nonviolent crimes because they are often committed through the manipulation of paperwork, penalties are quite harsh. Fines can reach into the six figures. Prison sentences up to 20 years are possible. Conviction often bars people from maintaining professional licenses.
- Fraud: Profiting from the use of deception is the common thread through all forms of fraud. Fines, prison time, and restitution orders are all on the table when sentencing people convicted of fraud. The federal government focuses largely on frauds that involve financial systems, mail, or telecommunication systems, like telemarketing, television, or the internet. People can commit fraud with credit cards, health insurance schemes, bankruptcy filings, or the manipulation of the value of securities. Other crimes arise when people communicate lies that convince people to pay for goods or services that never materialize or make donations to fake charities. When fraudulent businesses employ people, those employees may not realize they are part of an illegitimate operation. However, they could become exposed to criminal fraud charges anyway.
- Sex crimes: Federal investigators take very seriously their duty to prosecute people who commit sex crimes across state lines, sexually exploit minors, or distribute certain sexual content. Additionally, people have a negatively visceral response to any hint of sex crime accusations. For these reasons, anyone under investigation has a strong need for legal guidance from a knowledgeable federal defense lawyer. Mistakes made by someone facing allegations during the investigation stage could lead to criminal charges or, at a minimum, reputational damage.
Many of these offenses are also illegal at the state level, but larger-scale operations and activities that cross state or international borders will arouse the attention of federal investigators. Fraud schemes and sex crimes that involve telecommunications systems or shipping services also invite federal prosecution, making the need for an expert federal defense lawyer even more urgent.
Do not say anything that might incriminate you. Speak with an attorney first.
How lawyers defend people accused of federal crimes in West Palm Beach
At any stage of a federal investigation, a lawyer can provide many services, including:
- shielding you from making self-incriminating statements
- advising you about how and when to respond to questions from law enforcement
- explaining the nature of criminal charges
- planning defense strategies
- citing reasons to dismiss your charges
- negotiating a plea bargain
- defending you at trial
Speaking with a defense lawyer before being arrested is always appropriate if you feel that you are under suspicion for a federal crime. If an investigator asks to speak with you, you have a right to legal counsel before answering questions. Legal advice could provide insights about how to answer questions or if not answering would serve your best interests.
In a situation where you are confronted with a search warrant, legal guidance becomes more urgent. Although a court-ordered search cannot be stopped, it indicates that you or your organization is under extreme federal scrutiny. A lawyer could help you plan your next steps and respond in ways that protect your rights.
In the event of an arrest or imminent arrest in West Palm Beach, a federal defense attorney will explain the charges filed against you. This information allows you to understand the seriousness of the charges and their potential penalties.
At this stage, a federal criminal lawyer in West Palm Beach also evaluates the evidence as it is known at the time. After assessing the evidence, a lawyer can recommend responses such as fighting the charges on the basis of insufficient evidence. For many federal crimes, defense strategies hinge upon questioning the legitimacy of evidence or how authorities interpret it. Financial crimes in particular can involve large amounts of documentation that may or may not paint a clear picture of wrongdoing.
If evidence appears strong enough to convict a person, then a lawyer may suggest a plea bargain to avoid a harsh penalty. In the event that a federal crime goes to trial, a federal defense lawyer will strive to seat a sympathetic jury and cast doubt on the evidence.
The importance of legal advice and representation
Being approached by law enforcement usually shocks people. You might try to do immediate damage control on your own, but that could backfire. You might make statements in an attempt to cooperate. Federal agents could seize upon your statements as evidence of guilt and intensify their investigation. Legal representation has the potential to shield you from this outcome.
If charged and arrested, you should not assume that a public defender can give you the attention that you need during this vulnerable time. These public employees are overworked. Although they are well-meaning and want to protect your rights, they lack the resources that a private West Palm Beach federal criminal attorney can bring to your case.
Meet with a federal criminal defense attorney near you ASAP
Your freedom could very well be in jeopardy when you are the subject of a federal criminal case. The representation of an expert federal defense lawyer in West Palm Beach, Florida, is crucial for dealing effectively with investigation and prosecution. Joffe Law, P.A. has stood up for people in this stressful situation for over 35 years. Speaking with a lawyer is always better than facing federal authorities alone. For a confidential consultation, contact our office now.